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Re: speaking of plants... what a concept!

Donna, see you posted this to Perennials, too, so I'm crossposting my
reply; apologies to those of you on both lists.

Well, I have all three Arisaema.  Jim's right - all are different and
marvelous.  As he said, candidissimum has a bloom that - on my plant
- is a clear shell pink; large leaf; late to put its head up and

Fargesii is one of my favorites - huge leaves, purple striped blooms
held mostly under the umbrella type leaves - closely related to
candidissimum and also very late to emerge.

Sikokianum has the most striking inflorescence of all because the
spathe is white - my current one is the kind with the variegated leaf
- simply a stunning plant.  This is the pickiest of the 3 you list
because it is prone to rotting in winter wet; sometimes just plain
short-lived, but well worth replacing if you lose it.

I would send you to my series of articles on Arisaema as I discuss
all three of these, but I find that the Suite101.com image gremlin is
at work and none of the images in my articles that are stored on the
Suite server are currently loading:-(

So, check out The Arisaema Page for images of the above:


Any Alocasia can be potted up for winter - or simply live in a pot
all year around.  You can allow it to go dormant, in which case you
need to keep it relatively cool (like around 50F) and on the dry
side.  Or, you can treat it as a house plant with heat and water
throughout winter - and light - and it will just keep growing for
you.  You can't have too many Alocasias:-)  They all grow the same
way, no matter if hybrid or not.  Only difference might be in the
amount of sun required or tolerated...and, of course size and leaf
shape and color.

I don't know the Amsonia...5" sounds odd tho' for this genus.

I do not have the Asparagus verticillatus, but saw it at Tony Avents
a couple years ago.  Very interesting plant that I have considered
getting.  Doubt it would be hardy for you; think it would be iffy for
me, but definitely of great interest in the garden - not strange or
weird, but neat.

You cannot go wrong with any Epimedium.  You need to get Darryl
Probst's catalog - he is my Epimedium guru.  He tells which will
tolerate dry and which won't and which are spreaders and which are
clumpers, etc.

I have Indigofera kirilowii and enjoy it no end.  Have not found it
invasive.  Have had it in (of course) the wrong place - a raised bed,
where it gets too tall - since I put in that raised bed garden; what
is that now, five years or so anyway.  It has started to sucker a bit
- there is one offset about 8" from the main stem, but I would not
class that as invasive.

Charming small shrub type plant.  I have mine in part shade; like it
gets some direct early/midday sun and is in shade the rest of the
day; blooms like mad.  Gets about 3' tall; of course, I give mine a
haircut in spring, so don't know how tall it would get if you just
left it alone.

Here are some so-so pix of mine.  If the URL line-wraps, you'll need
to copy and paste to use it.


Also highly recommend Bletilla striata.  I've been growing the one
with the 'variegated' leaf - actually a *very* thin creamy white line
around the edge of the leaf - for almost 15 years in a large raised
planter.  Moved a bit a couple of years ago to another spot and it
seems happy there as well.  Gets part sun/shade; good drainage but
does not dry out as I water that planter.   Only thing you have to
watch with this plant is its tendency to rise very early in spring
and get nipped by frost.  Doesn't kill it, but once the foliage is
disfigured, it stays that way all year.  I throw Remay over mine if I
can manage to do it.  Great leaves as well as flowers.  I see Gene
has a couple I don't have and want. 

Don't grow Saccharum but according to John Greenlee's 'Encyclopedia
of Ornamental Grasses', it's only hardy to z 9-10.  Gets 12-15' tall.
 He does say some hardy clones have survived 10F and show promise as
selections for colder areas.   Appears there are several clones with
varying colors of canes.  Also says it grows well in pots or tubs, so
you could do that and bring it in for winter.  Canes are edible -
same as sugar cane used for sugar production.

Calopogon tuberosus is another I do not have so can't help, but
orchids can take a few years to settle down - I'd say 2 or 3 off the
top of my head as I've known other bulbous plants to take that long
after being disturbed.

I do not find Yucca a fast growing plant, so if you want something
that makes a statement, best try for it locally.  Don't know that one
as all I have are filamentosa and the yellow var. one whose name I

Nice list there, Donna:-)

Marge Talt, zone 7 Maryland
Editor:  Gardening in Shade
Current Article: Spring Peepers
Complete Index of Articles by Category and Date
All Suite101.com garden topics :
> From: Donna  <justme@prairieinet.net>
> Anyone grow these, looking for thoughts.
> -----
> Arisaema, if you could only pick one, what would it be and why:
>           Candidissimum
>           Fargesii
>           Sikokianum
> Also, what do you use for companion plants?
> ----
> Alocasia portodora
> Since it is considered a hybrid elephant ear, do they grow the same
> way... as in I could pot it up and let it go dormant for the
> Silly question, but would like to get more than one season from it
> they keep saying to plant it in the ground... not hardy here, nor
have I
> seen it offered locally.
> ----
> Amsonia ciliate var filifolia, states it is 5" (yes inches) tall.
> that a misprint? Might work for the garden railroad if it is...
> ------
> Asparagus verticillatus (vining asparagus) anyone? Looking
> but might really be strange....
> ----
> Calopogon tuberosus (grass pink orchard) needs re-establishment
> anyone know how many years that is... I hate when they say that!
> ----
> Going to try Epimedium's this year.... which are winners in your
> ------
> Indigofera kirilowii.... claiming not invasive... thoughts?
> ----
> also adding lilium to the garden.... thinking Clause Shride, but
> sure if it could take my sun.... looking for pink, red, mauve
> (Hey Kitty, is your group fundraiser selling these?)
> ----
> pushing the marker here, but Sacchrum arundinaceum... looks very
> interesting. Anyone grow it? Will it survive in zone 5 with
> Got a few spots that it might work. How big does it grow in one
> ----
> Yucca rostrata- anyone know how much it grows in a season? Might
try to
> talk a local nursery to get a larger one rather than a mail order
that I
> am sure will be small. 
> ---
> others on my wish list:
> Bletilla striata 
> Gaillardia aristata fanfare
> Kniphofia lola
> Tiarella pink skyrocket
> Donna
> Zone 5, IL
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